Tuesday, May 12, 2015

The Central in York, Maine

Now that we are experiencing spring and beautiful weather in New England, we decided to take a trip to the coast. In fact, the impetus for this review actually began a few years ago. Since going to the ocean is a favorite pastime of ours, we were in York, Maine during this particular trip and we decided to visit a breakfast place, The Stolen Menu Café, which was getting some good press at the time. I won't go into all of the sordid details but our experience was one of the worst in terms of service that we have ever had and it was no surprise when we learned that the restaurant went out of business. Seeing that we were just in the area we drove by to see what was there now and found The Central.

Although small in size you get a big city feel to the place when you walk through the front door. They split the room in two with a divider wall, the long bar on one side and the dining area to the right. This must be a trend because we are starting to see this used in more and more dining establishments. You will find low lighting and lighter colors on the walls contrasted with a black ceiling and pipes above which inviting to the eye while at the same time giving them a relaxing feel.

It was lunch time and we checked in with our waiter for a few suggestions. He was extremely helpful pointing us to some of their customer and his favorites. They have their own smoker so the smoked Texas brisket is extremely popular along with the hot pastrami Rachel, blackened shrimp tacos, black Angus burger and the lamb gyro. It is also our understanding that The Central tries to change up the menu to keep it fresh, always a difficult decision but a must as far as we're concerned if you want a successful restaurant.

My pick was the smoked Texas brisket:

Anytime I find out a restaurant smokes their own meat I end up choosing the item more often than not. Served on a potato bun the brisket was off the bone tender. Add pickled jalapeños, red onion, bbq sauce and dill pickles and you have a sandwich any deli would be proud off. Doubling the amount of brisket wouldn't hurt either.

The pastrami Rachel was my wife's choice:

She was very pleased with her selection. The meat was tender, the coleslaw was tasty and the house made pickles were amazing.

Naturally, we couldn’t leave without sampling dessert after learning that everything is made on the premises. We chose the tiramisu which was delicious.

Our best guess is that there are many of you on the New Hampshire seacoast who have probably not been to The Central. We suggest that you give them chance - you won't be disappointed.